Human Rights in Arab world deteriorating: Watchdog
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Last Updated: Tuesday, December 08, 2009, 23:39
Cairo: Human rights in the Arab world was worsening, with religious and ethnic minorities being target of discrimination in several countries, including Egypt and Saudi Arabia, a top rights watchdog has warned.

The Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies in a report issued today said the Arab governments "remained wedded to a broad array of repressive laws that undermine basic liberties".

"Peaceful rotation of power through representative politics, and clean and competitive elections remained a dream in most countries covered by this report," said report titled 'Bastion of Impunity, Mirage of Reform' on the state of human rights in 12 Arab countries.

It said most of the 12 countries in the region repressed human rights activists, press freedoms and discriminated against religious minorities.

"Religious and ethnic minorities also continued to suffer discrimination in several Arab countries, such as Egypt and Saudi Arabia, said the report which survey Algeria, Bahrain, Egypt, Iraq, Lebanon, Morocco, Palestine, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Syria, Tunisia and Yemen.

It underlined that the state of human rights in the Arab World was worsening this year as compared to 2008 with torture becoming the norm in many countries including Egypt.

Egypt and Syria were singled out as leading offenders, with Cairo said to lead the region in practising torture and Damascus for repressing rights activists.

The report also found torture was "routine" in Bahrain, "rampant" in Tunisia and practised in Saudi Arabia against terrorism suspects.


First Published: Tuesday, December 08, 2009, 23:39

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